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The Gisborne Photo News



Cruising the Canals

200 years ago during the Industrial Revolution, James Brindley designed and oversaw the building of canals in England, as a means of moving produce. Josiah Wedgewood was a great mover in the establishment of the canals, seeing them as a ideal alternative to the horses used to transport his precious china. Local man John McFarlane (previously profiled in the Photo News), set out in his 6ft 10 inch wide, 50ft long narrow boat to cover six hundred miles and four hundred and seventy locks over twelve weeks. His canal boat, aptly named the Kiwi Explorer, provided an inspirational holiday home as he visited dozens of villages throughout England and captured on film some magnificent English scenery.


John McFarlane's brother-in-law David Seaton drives the "Kiwi Explorer" across the 1 km long Pontcysyllte aqueduct (130 feet above the River Dee) near the village of Chirk.


The "Kiwi Explorer" moves along under one of the magnificent aqueducts built of brick & stone in the late 18th century and still intact.


A typical scene on the Shropshire Union canal